When people think bats, they think vampires and while the lesser known spectral bat is not a species of vampire bat, its appearance is however somewhat intimidating and holds the record as the largest carnivorous bat in the world. With wingspans of up to nearly a metre in length in some extraordinary cases, this creature would definitely be the kind of thing that appears in peoples nightmares. Although this bat is not a vampire bat, its demonic appearance would often mean that people could not tell the species apart. Despite having wingspans of nearly 1 metre, the spectral bat, like many other types of bat found on a global scale only weigh around 0.2kg on average, which is not a lot at all, this is because their bodies are very small and also because their wings are very typical of all bats and are almost transparent, which makes the overall weight seem very low when you consider the large wingspan.
They are fairly unusual compared to many other species of bat in the world. For one thing, many bats, even the majority, eat fruit and are herbivores, while the spectral bat eats meat and only meat. In addition, their habitat is not what you would call that of a textbook bats, with many people automatically associating dark, hollow caves with large flocks of bats. In actual fact, the spectral bat builds its nest mostly on the branches of trees but also inside many hollowed out trees and even some man made structures. The creatures also banish pre conceptions that bats live in darkness as much of their habitat is very lush and green and they often choose to roost next to a river.
The bat is not seen commonly on the global scale and it is safe to say that their region of habitation is pretty localised as they rarely stray from central America. Large numbers of the bat are generally found on Trinidad and other Caribbean islands and their habitat even stretches down to Brazil, in south America. Despite being confined to a fairly small region and the fact they are not in global abundance, the species is not considered to be threatened or endangered massively. Many other species of bat that exist in similar parts of the world are also considered more endangered and this could be to do with he fact that this bat is known to eat other smaller species of bat.
A traditional vampire bat, as everybody will tell you, feeds on the blood of animals which is often extracted from sleeping animals, which allows the animal to feed without actually having to hunt. The spectral bat, although it co exists in and around some of the same regions as the vampire bat, definitely does not feed in this way and as the largest carnivorous bat there is, the thirst for flesh, rather than blood is what drives the bat to hunt down live food. The fearsome creature is not one to shy away from the hunt and typically goes after animals that are a similar weight to the bat itself. The prey ranges from basically anything it can find, even smaller species of bats, small birds and mammals. The creature has been found to not be very picky, as over 18 carcasses of dead prey have been found at the roost of these bats.